Wednesday, 24 April 2019

now hist. and rare

Sentence First refers us to a delightful obsession from bibliophile, logophile Ammon Shea undertaken in 2008, a full-time, year-long commitment to read every volume of the Oxford English Dictionary (previously) from cover to cover, approaching some sixty million words (not entries alone but terms plus sometimes expansive their definitions but an impressive vocabulary nonetheless by any measure), and to record his reflections. Such curated lists are always an invitation to find one’s own to share but there are some really choice words, such as constult (v:) to act stupidly together, epizeuxis (n:) the repetition of a word with vehemence and emphasis, latibulate (v:) to hide oneself in a corner and vulpeculated (pa. pple. [past participle]:) in the state of having been robbed by a fox. Much more to explore at the link above.

telling the bees

Not exclusively a British custom but perhaps more concentrated than on the continent, the very endearing custom of ‘telling the bees’ recorded in Ireland, France, Germany and Bohemia as well probably has ancient origins in the mythological belief that the helpful insects could bridge the natural and supernatural realms.

Kept bees would be kept apprised of all milestones in the life of the beekeeper and family and surely this confessional sharing was therapeutic and a comfort in the face of loss or change, and breach of the practise—that is, failure to involve the hive during major life events, not putting them into mourning or informing them of births and weddings carried a penalty, not only foreboding for the occasion itself but the colony itself could become unproductive or stray. Though divination is not emphasised as much as participation, the bees through their behaviour could also give an omen and help to optimise outcomes. Learn more about the strong and establish relationship between humans and the pollinators at Amusing Planet at the link above and do take a moment to greet and thank your local bees.

reggie mac dawson has absconded with my funds

On this day in 1969, the US government issued its first mortgage-backed security through an organisation incorporated the year prior, the Government National Mortgage Association—colloquially known as Ginne Mae, a wholly-owned charter within the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to promote home-ownership.
An earlier and enduring iteration was creations of the crisis of Great Depression, the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and in 1970 the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac) and infamously Sallie Mae (the Student Loan Marketing Association) do not have the full-faith and backing of the federal government, guaranteeing solvency, only Ginnie Mae (with a real estate portfolio upwards of two trillion dollars presently), yet are de facto beneficiaries, whose purpose is to create secondary bond markets and have occasioned a few crises of their own. Jimmy Mack, when are you coming back?

tiny bubbles

The burst of effervescence, the formula and trial plus error that has accompanied the process of producing and perfecting fizzy drinks since the discovery of fermentation is an intersectional testament to human endeavour and appreciating the physics, cultivation and rigours of design that goes into harnessing the power and pressure of carbonation makes toasting all the more profound. 
Bubbles are a spontaneous nucleation of gas dissolved in the liquid, agitated to achieve atmospheric parity with what’s within the bottle and glass with what’s without, dithering at the surface due to what’s called the Marangoni effect, a convective property of surface tension that’s also responsible for ‘tears’ or ‘curtains’ of wine no matter how neatly a glass is poured. Visit Æon Magazine at the link above to indulge in more refreshing contemplation on matter, motion and behaviour.

Tuesday, 23 April 2019


global imaging ambassador: the architectural photography portfolio of Tobi Shinobi, via Coudal Partners’ Fresh Signals

sunburst sanctuary: a profile of an enduring California commune at the intersection of peace and profit

let us all go and make a new crack friend: a bizarre short featured on Sesame Street and the strange quest to find it

dataviz: artefacts that attest to the human compulsion to abstract information

chindōgu: useless products (see also) designed to solve problems that don’t exist from Matt Benedetto

tehran façades: the greebled hi-rises of Iran, via Present /&/ Correct  

Monday, 22 April 2019

weyland-yutani corporation

Ahead of the fortieth anniversary of the theatrical release of the first installment of the Alien franchise that’s coming in a month’s time on 25 May, a series of ten-minute, studio-authorised vignettes that feed into the movies’ mythology are being showcased.
The latest short film, Ore (find links to the rest at the source link above), also references 26th April as Alien Day, chosen for the distress signal originating from the natural satellite LV-426 of gas giant Calpamos, once known as Acheron and a human colony, to which the crew of the USCSS Nostromo diverted from its mission to investigate. The actual landing, according to franchise source-material, on the desolate moon took place on 3 June, 2122.